Victoria records 221 new COVID cases, more than half are mystery cases

Victoria has recorded 221 new COVID-19 cases, with more than half of them currently unlinked to the current outbreak. Of the 221 new cases, 98 have been linked, meaning 123 are classed as mystery cases. There were 36,716 vaccinations administered and 42,429 tests received on Tuesday. The 221 new cases follows two consecutive days of 246 cases. Details and locations of the cases will be revealed later today. As of Monday, the government said it was still hopeful of some easing of lockdown restrictions for regional Victoria at some stage this week. The new figures come after positive coronavirus fragments were detected in Ballarat’s wastewater. There remains just one exposure site in Ballarat, after a positive case attended Australian Catholic University last week. READ MORE: See where all the active cases are here. Meanwhile, up to 100 worshippers who gathered near a synagogue in Melbourne’s southeast in breach of COVID-19 lockdown rules will be fined by police. People were spotted entering a building, believed to be a prayer room, near a Ripponlea synagogue early on Tuesday morning to mark the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah. In the afternoon, officers surrounded both front and back entrances of the building, where an Orthodox Jewish group was believed to be congregating upstairs. OTHER NEWS: The stand-off ended just after 8pm, with several people filing outside and a group of traditionally dressed worshippers became aggressive. A Nine cameraman was pushed and the group briefly chanted and clapped in the alleyway, with police taking their details before moving them on. See all the exposure sites here. “All adults who attended will be issued with a $5452 fine. A number of children who were present will not be fined,” a Victoria Police spokesman said in a statement. “Investigators believe a number of other people were present and are yet to be spoken to by police. Investigators are working to identify them.” Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp called out the gathering saying everyone needs to be united in stopping the spread of the Delta strain of COVID-19. “Everybody empathises there are special occasions and religious occasions and times that we want to be together with others. All of us feel that way,” she told Nine Network on Wednesday. “But it is just not fair that some members of the community feel that they can flout the rules and getaway with it.” In August, Victoria Police handed out more than $300,000 in fines to the hosts and guests of an illegal engagement party at Caulfield North. It was hosted by a prominent Jewish family. Premier Daniel Andrews said he recognised Rosh Hashanah, the two-day Jewish New Year festival, as a significant time for the community. “But we all have to be safe in everything we do, regardless of what might motivate us,” he said on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Mr Andrews took a swipe at the federal government over reports COVID- hit NSW is receiving 45 per cent of Pfizer doses despite having about 32 per cent of Australia’s population. Federal Health Minister Greg Hung flatly rejected the claim NSW was getting more than its fair share, saying doses were initially prioritised to Victoria during its previous outbreak to save lives. To help get more shots in arms, Victoria is adding 40,000 vaccination appointments each week at state-run hubs. Meanwhile, workers on construction sites across the state will from Wednesday be offered vaccinations as part of a joint initiative by employers, unions and the state government. Some 30,000 doses will be available and there will also be rapid testing on sites to help find any asymptomatic cases. The first phase of the program will begin with 1000 workers rolling up their sleeves for vaccination. “It’s time to get the jab done, so Australia can re-open, and we can all get back to work,” Master Builders Victoria CEO Rebecca Casson said in a statement. Participation in the program is voluntary. Melbourne will remain under tough lockdown restrictions until at least 70 per cent of eligible Victorians receive their first vaccine. The Stawell Times-News has removed the paywall from our stories relating to health warnings and safety of the community. However, we depend on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.

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Victoria has recorded 221 new COVID-19 cases, with more than half of them currently unlinked to the current outbreak.

Of the 221 new cases, 98 have been linked, meaning 123 are classed as mystery cases.

There were 36,716 vaccinations administered and 42,429 tests received on Tuesday.

The 221 new cases follows two consecutive days of 246 cases.

Details and locations of the cases will be revealed later today.

As of Monday, the government said it was still hopeful of some easing of lockdown restrictions for regional Victoria at some stage this week.

The new figures come after positive coronavirus fragments were detected in Ballarat’s wastewater.

There remains just one exposure site in Ballarat, after a positive case attended Australian Catholic University last week.

See where all the active cases are here.

Meanwhile, up to 100 worshippers who gathered near a synagogue in Melbourne’s southeast in breach of COVID-19 lockdown rules will be fined by police.

People were spotted entering a building, believed to be a prayer room, near a Ripponlea synagogue early on Tuesday morning to mark the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah.

In the afternoon, officers surrounded both front and back entrances of the building, where an Orthodox Jewish group was believed to be congregating upstairs.

The stand-off ended just after 8pm, with several people filing outside and a group of traditionally dressed worshippers became aggressive.

A Nine cameraman was pushed and the group briefly chanted and clapped in the alleyway, with police taking their details before moving them on.

See all the exposure sites here.

“All adults who attended will be issued with a $5452 fine. A number of children who were present will not be fined,” a Victoria Police spokesman said in a statement.

“Investigators believe a number of other people were present and are yet to be spoken to by police. Investigators are working to identify them.”

Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp called out the gathering saying everyone needs to be united in stopping the spread of the Delta strain of COVID-19.

“Everybody empathises there are special occasions and religious occasions and times that we want to be together with others. All of us feel that way,” she told Nine Network on Wednesday.

“But it is just not fair that some members of the community feel that they can flout the rules and getaway with it.”

In August, Victoria Police handed out more than $300,000 in fines to the hosts and guests of an illegal engagement party at Caulfield North. It was hosted by a prominent Jewish family.

Premier Daniel Andrews said he recognised Rosh Hashanah, the two-day Jewish New Year festival, as a significant time for the community.

“But we all have to be safe in everything we do, regardless of what might motivate us,” he said on Tuesday.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hung flatly rejected the claim NSW was getting more than its fair share, saying doses were initially prioritised to Victoria during its previous outbreak to save lives.

To help get more shots in arms, Victoria is adding 40,000 vaccination appointments each week at state-run hubs.

Meanwhile, workers on construction sites across the state will from Wednesday be offered vaccinations as part of a joint initiative by employers, unions and the state government.

Some 30,000 doses will be available and there will also be rapid testing on sites to help find any asymptomatic cases.

The first phase of the program will begin with 1000 workers rolling up their sleeves for vaccination.

“It’s time to get the jab done, so Australia can re-open, and we can all get back to work,” Master Builders Victoria CEO Rebecca Casson said in a statement.

Participation in the program is voluntary.

Melbourne will remain under tough lockdown restrictions until at least 70 per cent of eligible Victorians receive their first vaccine.

The Stawell Times-News has removed the paywall from our stories relating to health warnings and safety of the community. However, we depend on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.

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